Valley of the Temples

Mid-century modern buildings

Located on the windward (eastern) side of Oahu near Kaneohe, the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park, best known for its 1960s replica of the 11th Century Japanese Byodo-In Buddhist Temple, was founded by real estate magnate Paul Trousdale (Racquet Club Garden Villas, Trousdale Estates) in 1963 and is the final resting place for thousands of island residents.

Specifically, it’s the Memorial Park’s arresting Family Services & Administration building, designed by resort architect George “Pete” Wimberly in 1965, that we’re singling out here. Designed to resemble a Hawaiian temple (heiau) this evocative concrete, lava rock & wood structure with its graceful squared-off arches reaching for the heavens, effortlessly displays how mid-century modern architecture can transcend itself and become more… much more.

The Funeral Chapel too, with its modernist take on the popular church A-Frame, is exquisite and – not to overstate it too much –  a revelation, set against the backdrop of the beautiful Ko’olau mountains. This place is a real must see!

UPDATE: This building has been renovated and restored, read full story here.

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Tagged In cemetery,george pete wimberly,hawaii,Honolulu,kaneohe,MCM,memorial park,Mid Century Modern,Modernism,paul trousdale,See and Valley of the Temples

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